Barnes - Decorating the forest

Our Week in the Forest... 

This week the children’s ingenuity has paved the way for some fantastic achievements!
As we walked into our Rocks Lane camp, many of the children noticed that our vegetable patch fence had fallen down in some places. A big group of children were quick to investigate to figure out what had happened. They realised that the supporting posts had snapped in some places and after spending some time trying to push the posts back into the ground, the children decided that it was not going to work. Instead they went off in search of new posts. They went out on an adventure in a large group in search of suitable sticks and as they went along, they tested the strength, thickness and lengths of them.
When they brought their resources back to camp it was suggested that the sticks needed to be cut to the correct size. Our Little Forest Folk-ers got to work, measuring the fence and marking off the sticks at the correct height. We all then set up a tool area so that we could use the bow saw to cut the sticks. It was amazing to see the concentration and listening skills on show throughout. Once they were cut, the children were then supported to hammer the sticks into place, pushing them into the ground in the places where the fence needed most additional support. Finally, the children used small pieces of paracord to tie the fence to the posts themselves. They showed incredible amounts of dexterity to do that as they had to thread the cord through tiny gaps, walk around to the other side of the fence and then tie the knot! Many were able to do this completely on their own!
One day this week, the children found some off cuts of wood. Noticing that they were about the same size and shape as mobile telephones they quickly set about making a shop to sell them. Soon everyone was equipped with one and they were calling each other and organising parties together! Some of the children spent time drawing the numbers on them, practicing their fine motor skills and number recognition! In preparation of celebrations they then used the rest of the wood to “decorate the forest”, hanging the wooden pieces on the branches.

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As part of some ongoing celebrations this week some children decided to set up a wedding. They built a special marriage table using the tongue and groove planks and made beautiful flower arrangements using pots, water and ivy! Other children soon joined in and they all had a wonderful party! Later on, the children used the purple tub to build a giant cake mixing in hundreds of different ingredients and working seamlessly as a team.
Other role-play ideas this week included a giant dragon. The children walked along a log and worked together as a team, trying not to wake the dragon. They tiptoed around him asking everyone to be quiet as otherwise he could wake up and might burn down the forest. Later they built an amazing trap using sticks, ropes and stones complete with trap door, barriers and water area.
On one of our adventure walks this week the children went off in search of treasure. The children really showed their creativity as they invented their own clues. For example, they came across a stone with a pointed end and they decided that this was an arrow pointing them into the right direction. Later on, they found two sticks crossed over each other. Quickly noticing this was like the cross on a treasure map they decided this was where they should dig! They soon found an old buried brick which became their treasure chest with a special map inside and lots of golden coins! They worked together with only one stick (the special tool) to dig it out, taking turns and helping each other, without any help from an educator. After such a productive week, we all can’t wait to see what the children have in store for us next week!

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Little Forest Folk